Tags: Trump Administration | Donald Trump | ruddy | trump | surveillance | msnbc

Ruddy to MSNBC: Trump Campaign Had 'Consensus' on Surveillance

(MSNBC)

By Sandy Fitzgerald   |   Tuesday, 07 Mar 2017 06:28 AM

President Donald Trump was "pretty upset" over the weekend about his belief that former President Barack Obama had targeted him, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy said Monday, adding that he had not seen Trump with "this level of anger about something in a long time."

"I saw him twice on Saturday, once at the lunch hour and then again at dinner, and I would describe him as not being a happy camper," Ruddy told Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC's "Andrea Mitchell Reports."

Trump "reiterated what he said in the tweets [on Saturday morning], this is Watergate level stuff. This is McCarthyism, it was very bad. He seemed very confident about the information he had," Ruddy said.

Trump shared a bit about how the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Court had worked, and he was concerned about whether the media was covering the story, Ruddy said.

"I said it was widespread in the news," said Ruddy. "He feels he's been targeted in that President Obama and some of his supporters have been organizing in an effort to undermine him."

Mitchell said that as president, Trump has the tools to determine what the facts are. Ruddy said he believes Trump knows what the facts are.

"I want to make clear, I don't speak for him and I don't speak for the White House," Ruddy said. "I'm an independent media person. I was just reporting what he shared with me, but I think there's actually a fairly low threshold for President Trump to be proven right or largely right here."

Ruddy said he has also spoken with people in the Trump campaign, and there is nearly a "100 percent consensus among a lot of people that worked in that campaign that they were surveilled by federal authorities."

Ruddy said a White House officlal explained Sunday night that most of the people issuing denials "parsing words, mincing their words…"

"What they're denying is that President Obama ordered the wiretaps for the surveillance, or that they targeted narrowly Trump Tower, and it indicates and that suggests that there was some level of intelligence surveillance of the campaign, which is a serious, serious matter."

Ruddy said that while a president does not have the legal authority to order wiretaps, it would be "beyond belief that President Obama would not be aware of this."

"Look, we had a situation where the Obama White House targeted conservative groups through the IRS," said Ruddy. "The leader of that unit, the IRS, was over at Obama's White House 24 times or more. She used the Fifth Amendment. They deleted and destroyed evidence and emails, and yet there was never any complaint by anyone in the media about this."

Trump looks at the situation, and sees that his high level conversations with heads of state were leaked within hours after they were made, through Obama holdovers in the administration, said Ruddy, and "no one in the press is making an issue" over it.

"That's a federal crime. And so when he sees this type of behavior, that this targeting has been going on, I think he's acting with some emotion here," said Ruddy. "He obviously likes to do it by tweet. I'm not so sure that's the best way for him to communicate very serious issues like this, but I do think that he feels passionate about it."

Ruddy also knocked former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's denials, pointing out that Clapper had also testified there was no massive data collection of America's phone records.

"It was out-and-out perjury, and he later had to admit that he had not told the Congress the truth," said Ruddy. "This is the guy they're hanging their hat on?"

Ruddy said he agrees with Trump's call for an investigation into the wiretapping issue.

"I'm not saying he's right or wrong," said Ruddy. "I'm just reporting who he told me, but also when you look I think, at Clapper himself says there was no evidence of collusion between the Russians and the Trump campaign. I think that's pretty significant."

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Politics
President Donald Trump was "pretty upset" over the weekend about his belief that former President Barack Obama had targeted him, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy said Monday, adding that he had not seen Trump with "this level of anger about something in a long time."
ruddy, trump, surveillance, msnbc
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2017-28-07
 

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